Recognizing Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia
The Progress Pride Flag was raised at Toronto Police Service headquarters on International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia observed on May 17.
Chief Myron Demkiw said the Service is listening to and learning from community members’ lived experiences and fully supporting Justice Gloria Epstein’s Missing & Missed Report recommendations.
“We are making progress on the Gender Diversity and Trans Inclusion Project,” he added. “We are also having meetings with the 2SLGBTQ+ISN and Consultative Committee members to learn about the unique challenges they are facing, including some of the more recent challenges and how we as a Service can better support them.”
Demkiw thanked Constable Cheryl Taylor for taking on the new 2SLGBTQ+ Liaison Officer role in the Community Partnerships & Engagement Unit and supporting Sergeant Rob Chevalier.
On June 1, the Progress Pride Flag will be raised for the first time at every TPS Division that has the capacity to accommodate two flags.
“Our ongoing work, learning and commitment to building stronger relationships continues,” said Demkiw. “And I want to personally thank the entire Command Team for their unwavering support for our 2SLGBTQ+ communities.”
Community member Brodi Tyler joined Demkiw in raising the flag that was immediately lowered to half-mast in honour of Ontario Provincial Police Sergeant Eric Mueller who was killed in the line of duty.
“I do not believe that just one person is able to represent any community of such vast diversity,” Tyler said. “But I do believe that just one person’s courage to stand up in the face of adversity and speak up can have a monumental impact on society.”
The Progress Pride flag places greater emphasis on inclusion and progress and includes yellow and a purple circle to represent intersex and non-binary, black and brown stripes representing marginalized LGBTQ2S+ communities of color as well as the colors pink, light blue and white, which are used on the Transgender Pride Flag.